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Answering The Call of The Wild

Monica Wilcox's picture

Have you gazed on naked grandeur where there is nothing else to gaze on,
Set pieces and drop-curtain scenes galore,
Big mountains heaved to heaven, which the blinding sunsets blazon,
Black canyons where the rapids rip and roar?
Have you swept the visioned valley with the green stream streaking through it,
Searched the Vastness for a something you have lost?
Have you strung your soul to silence?
Then for God’s sake go and do it;
Hear the challenge, learn the lesson, pay the cost.
                                                Robert Service - “The Call of The Wild”

Is that what I’ve unknowingly come to do -- to pay the cost before a thousand set of steely black eyes watching my every move? If I take one more step, they will cower for cover behind the rocky ledge, another step and they will toss themselves right off the edge of Costa Rica into the Pacific tide.

Life Lived on Ten Legs

The crabs, which come in all shapes and sizes, scatter from me like rings in a crusty pool, morphing the dark rock into ripples of life. I sit next to a large crevice covered in a tan bubbling coral mound. Within the tiny holes are busy little claws picking at little goodies brought in by the last wave. 

There are more sets of crustacean eyeballs peeking over the edge of every rock around me, assessing my threat status. If I sit long enough they’ll move me from threatcon delta (under attack) down to threatcon alpha (friendly engagement). They eventually scurry back onto the rock to continue the work of cleaning the coast of microscopic organisms. Who am I to interrupt the workings of the sea? And why do I find them charming, knowing the thought of being surrounded by their land-going twins, the arachnids, would place me in my own personal horror flick? 

A dime size white shell with pleasantly placed geometrical spikes inconspicuously creeps by my hip. I pick the crab up and place him on my palm. It takes one second to assess my chemistry before it zooms across my palm into an all out dive. I guess the risk of falling for all eternity is preferred to the heat of my foreign hand? 

A Seat on the Original Stage

Why not be drawn to this place; the original stage -- first there was light, then the land and then the sea. It is no wonder we are drawn to the coast line, the meeting place of all three. If I’m searching for something, or listening for a challenge, I’d rather do it in God’s landscape than in a man’s.    

The brown beach of Playa Hermosa stretches around an inner cove, broken only by the lava rock of a long gone volcano reaching out into the warm waves. A lifetime of calluses can not cut the pain of walking on this rock, which limits the human trespassers to the few who have brought good shoes. Tonight, there is only one other woman -- the two of us, the sunset and a hundred thousand crabs.

Where the Blinding Sunsets Blazon 

The light changes, tinting this world of black rock, tropical green banks and baby blue sea in a pink hue. This area of Costa Rica is renowned for its sunsets. This is where white clouds are fire blasted by vibrant orange light -- the sun’s last attempt to torch the dark of night out of existence. It’s a sky that does not intend to be ignored. 

The Vastness of this moment, in yet another sunset, is so grand, so perfect, so consuming that my breath steadies as my soul starts to be strung. My heart responds (it can’t help but respond) and every aspect of love -- from the first to the last, from the glowing highs to the murky lows, from hello to goodbye, from the conditional love of my foolish years to the unconditional love of now -- all of it bursts from my chest, spilling like a waterfall to join in the pink tinted tides at my feet. 

And then nature decides it’s done with the pre-show, notching up from grand to spectacular. Love, on a Universal scale, flows back at me; every conscious being who has ever loved, and will ever love, is blazing in the reds and gold of the world. Chris Brown’s voice rings in the air, “And now I know I can be the only one. I bet it’s hearts all over the world tonight, with the love of their life, who feel what I feel when I’m with you.” Now I know that “you” is with a capital “Y”.

Experiencing the Vastness

I gaze over at my lone-companion two outcroppings down. She stands amid the crabs, at the brink of the rocks, waves crashing over her Tevas, soaking her cargo shorts, mindless to anything but the glow incasing us. She looks as if she’d like to reach out, grab two handfuls of that sky and splash it over her face, shivering wildly as it runs down her neck onto her white tank. She looks ready to plunge a straw into the pink frothy atmosphere and fill her belly full. I have no idea who she is, her story of love, but I know her thoughts. I know  in this moment we are connected.

When the reds and pinks give way to purples, I scamper back up the beach toward my resort, leaving my fellow tourist to her outpost. As I leave the dark sand for pavement I pass two older ladies who made it only a few feet into the sand before the sun fell out of view. “Well I can tell you THAT certainly wasn’t worth leaving my room for!! I knew I should have gone to the pool bar instead.” I chuckle in amazement.  

Let us probe the silent places, let us seek what luck betide us;
Let us journey to a lonely land I know.
There’s a whisper on the night-wind, there’s a star agleam to guide us,
And the Wild is calling, calling...let us go. 

                                                                Robert Service-“The Call of The Wild

Have you ever found the Vastness in a cabana bar, or do you find it is easier to connect to THE ALL in nature? When was the last time you heard the Wild calling and answered? Has it been too long? How long can you be removed from nature without it affecting your soul? Could you live a lifetime “inside” without feeling spiritually/mentally/physically impacted? When you travel do you make a point to immerse yourself in the natural areas?   

Owning Pink is inviting you to step beyond the drywall to join us in the Call of the Wild posse -- Owning The Planet. This group is all about sharing our journey to stay personally connected (or to re-connect) to the natural areas that surround us; to Own the Planet. We'll chat about the ah-ha moments we experience in the wild, tips to care for our earth, thoughts of where our environment may or may not be going, your favorite nature spots, and photographs of Mother Earth at her absolute best. Join us and find out how much MOJO (more joy) is waiting for you in the green spaces.          

Photo by Philip K 

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